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China will, by the end of the year, have more renewable and low-carbon power generation capacity than fossil fuel capacity, the country’s Electricity Council has reported.
Reuters reports that China is expected to add 180 GW of new non-fossil fuel power capacity this year, boosting the total to 1,300 GW, running the gamut from nuclear and hydro to wind and solar.
This would represent half of the China Electricity Council’s total planned capacity for this year, which stands at 2,600 GW. By the end of the current decade, China has plans to boost wind and solar power capacity alone to 1,600 GW to reduce its pollution levels. The Chinese power industry is responsible for about 41 percent of the country’s total emissions.
Last year, China built more offshore wind farms than the rest of the world together, Forbes reported recently, connecting some 17 GW to the grid. Now, the country accounts for half of the global offshore wind power total, at 26 GW out of a global 54 GW.
China’s total renewable power generation capacity additions for 2021 reached 101 GW, the report also noted.
The world leader in renewables, however, was not spared from the supply chain problems that plagued the global wind and solar industries. Earlier this month, Bloomberg reported that Beijing was investing in new polysilicon production capacity.
As a result, by the beginning of 2023, global capacity should be double what it is now. This, according to the agency’s Dan Murtaugh, should help bring down inflated prices for photovoltaic cells and make solar power more affordable.
Yet another crunch is looming on the horizon, and it will affect both wind and solar. According to Rystad Energy, the global copper market will swing into a deficit of more than 6 million tons by 2030.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.